Chicago Cubs: Five things to look forward to in 2021

(Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)
(Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images) /
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Joc Pederson / Cubs
(Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images) /

Cubs: Acquiring former Dodgers slugger Joc Pederson could be huge

The Cubs outfield is looking pretty good this year. Even with the departure of Kyle Schwarber, the Cubs are well-off in left field with Joc Pederson. He signed with the Cubs this offseason on a one-year deal.

Pederson might have had a bad regular season in 2020, but he is coming off an incredible postseason. He had 13 hits and three walks in 37 plate appearances with two home runs and eight RBI. Overall he is a career .806 OPS hitter with 130 home runs and 116 OPS+ in 748 games. His exit velocity numbers are well above average, even last year when he struggled.

His strikeout rate has dropped from his first two seasons in the majors and has been successful at hitting heaters. While still a guy who will strikeout a bit more than average he is an upgrade in that category over Schwarber.

He is playing for his future so it is easy to believe he will be playing very hard this year and giving it all. Not to mention his versatility in the field and being a good defender. This gives the Cubs three dependable gloves in Pederson, Ian Happ and Jason Heyward. He might not be a high-average contact hitter, but a guy who can hit the ball hard and flash some leather is worth watching and fans should look forward to Pederson being a Cub.